Ask the Inspector: Thefts simple to prevent

I’D like to talk this week about an issue we have been fairly vocal about now for a few weeks, and that is thefts from motor vehicles.   

I would love nothing more than to stop talking about this issue, but it is one we are really grappling with at the moment and it is being highlighted at state level.   

I won’t go over the old look, lock, leave" message, because it has been done to death and it is obviously not working.   

So I would love to hear from you about how we can help address this issue of making easy targets of our property.   

Why are we not securing our goods that we have worked so hard to buy in the first place?   

The popular items to be stolen out of cars are coins, tools, sunglasses, laptops, phones and GPS devices.   

If you leave these in your cars and leave your car open, it is not rocket science what the result will be.

It is generally a myth that offenders will just break your windows to steal if the car is locked.  Most offenders tell us that they will just keep trying doors until they find one open and then look around.   

If there are no items visible from the outside and the vehicle is locked, they will move on to the next car.

It is also generally a myth that most thefts happen away from home.  

In Bendigo, most thefts are happening in driveways of  homes or out the front of homes.   

So the message is clear there – don’t be complacent just because you are home.

But it is not only thefts from cars, caused by not securing property, that are happening in this area.   

Twice last week we had cars stolen, where the owners of the cars had left the keys in the ignition while they got out of the car to go into a building.   

In both cases the owners were  gone for a short time, only to come back and find their car had been stolen.   

Three times last week we had bikes stolen, two of which were sitting on the front lawn and unsecured. The third was in a carport area also easily accessed from the street.

So you see it is not just thefts from cars, it is thefts in general that are all avoidable if we just take more care to lock up our belongings, so please help us out. You may have read recently that we are going to start knocking on your door if we find you car unlocked outside your house overnight.  

I too was sceptical of how this might work, but the results in Geelong are there for all to see - it works.    

I hope we don’t get to this point, but you can sense the desperation in my tone about how we can stop this totally preventable behaviour. 

If you have any information about active thieves, please let us know at the station or call Crime Stoppers, anonymously if you like, on 1800 333 000.

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